This weekend, I had the honor and the privilege to attend a campaign trip to support a truly inspirational leader in his journey toward the presidency.
After spending the weekend in New Hampshire, I want you to know exactly why casting your vote and enlisting your support to Bill Bradley’s presidential campaign will certainly change the world and the face of the American political tradition.
Hearing the word impeachment one too many times here in Foggy Bottom, we all know that politics right now is discouraging. In a time when your vote is won through bitter, negative and meaningless media manipulation, it is no wonder that voter turnout is low and people have no faith in their government. We often choose the lesser of the two evils – the person we feel will do the least damage or exploit the public the least. The contemporary politics of America is simply awful.
This weekend, Bradley told his audience that he feels people are essentially good. He said that public policy must reflect the will of the people to promote that public good for their society. He cited the need – not only to recognize the tragedy that so many people in the United States do not have health care – to actually do something about it. He discussed his plans to eliminate child poverty and to recreate public discourse by reforming campaign finance reform. The startling development is that I believe him.
Bill Bradley has always been the kind of leader who makes the unlikely possible. As a legislator he followed his conscience.
Bradley once told me in a phone conversation that he always discusses policy with the public instead of blindly following the polls. That phone conversation only happened because the Senator was willing to help me out with a research project. Bradley engages in public discussions at coffee shops, in diners and on the beach. He is truly a man of the people.
After my experience this weekend in his grass-roots campaign, I believe that Bill Bradley can be the next president of the United States. There are times in all our lives when we experience an outcome that we once deemed impossible. Those are the times when we became part of something special, unique and beautiful. The tradition of presidential politics in the United States may have disintegrated, but if you are willing to join his team, you will be doing something very positive for your country.
This weekend, I honestly felt like I was changing the world. It was redeeming to campaign for a candidate that has as much integrity and intelligence as Bill Bradley. This weekend woke me from my political slumber. I invite all of you to become part of this exciting time. You too can, once again, fall in love with the political process that brought you to Washington.
If we support Bradley’s cause, we can all regain our faith in government, and the very democratic traditions that have made our free society possible.
-The writer is a sophomore majoring in political science and philosophy.